In the mediaDisability-friendly living available in Wallan

May 09, 2024

A new custom-built home for residents with disabilities is almost ready for occupancy in Wallan.

Available to NDIS candidates with either Robust or Improved Liveability Category SDA funding, the Wallan home will provide accommodation for up to two residents and a support worker.

Built by Specialist Disability Accommodation provider DEC Housing, the housing provider stated that they have partnered with some of Australia’s most respected home builders and architects specialising in building accessible homes.

Living room of SDA home

As a result, clients ‘won’t need to worry whether or not (builders) understand what ‘robust’ or ‘high physical support’ means in the context of (their) brief’. Alongside innovative and accessible designs – such as remote-control doors, windows, and heating and cooling systems – each DEC home also utilises safe, reliable, and sustainable energy solutions to reduce power consumption and bills, even in bushfire prone areas.  

The first – and only – SDA provider that guarantees clients’ right to reside after 20 years in their home, residents can rest assured that their home is theirs for life despite SDA’s funding 20-year cap.

Client advisor for Northern Victoria and Tasmania Rebecca Schemmerling stated that DEC Housing provided a person-centred approach to providing support and accommodation.

“I think our key difference is how mindful we are of asking questions to understand what our clients want, rather than just expecting they’ll like whatever we happen to build,” Ms Schemmerling said.

Improved Liveability SDA ensuite

“A project with DEC Housing is a collaborative process where we’ll both agree on the right land to buy and the construction design.”

Ms Schemmerling emphasised that the person-centred approach did not end after the build was completed.

“I will update the clients throughout the whole time, and even after the build to ensure the supports within the home are going well and provide ongoing repairs and maintenance to the home.”

In addition to designing accessible homes with a specific client in mind, Ms Schemmerling said that they also match eligible housemates together.

“The most rewarding part of my job is helping people with disability to realise their dream home, in the location and with the features that help them to achieve their goals.”

Original article from The North Central Review, 7 May 2024 

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